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Friday April 4, 2008

Work on permanent LCCT to start this year

By CHOW HOW BAN



SHANGHAI: Work on the permanent low-cost carrier termina (LCCT) in KL International Airport (KLIA) is likely to commence this year, said Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) managing director Datuk Seri Bashir Ahmad.

He said the new LCCT, which would have a capacity of handling 30 million to 35 million passengers per annum, would replace the present one, which could only handle 10 million passengers per annum.

Datuk Seri Bashir Ahmad.

“We (MAHB) are in discussion with the Government to look for a place to build the permanent LCCT because the present one will be outgrown in terms of passenger demand,” he told the Malaysian media at the two-day Airports Council International conference here.

The permanent LCCT would be built in the masterplan area to provide easier connectivity with KLIA’s main terminal, Bashir said, adding that the existing building would also be expanded to handle 15 million passengers per year “very soon.”

“We fully agree that the current terminal needs to be expanded because based on AirAsia’s forecast, we will achieve 10 million passengers per annum earlier than 2012,” he said.

The existing RM108mil LCCT, built on a temporary site near the cargo-handling area, started operations two years ago.

Currently, AirAsia, Thai AirAsia, Cebu Pacific Airlines, Tiger Airways and AWAIR operate from the LCCT.

On expansion of KLIA, Bashir said MAHB also planned to build the second satellite terminal as the number of passengers would exceed the airport’s capacity of 25 million passengers per annum in future.

MAHB was working with its consultants to ascertain the kind of future commercial development around the airport, he said, adding: “There have been many suggestions like a theme park and golf course. We should make an announcement soon.”

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